10 questions with Emell Vee, the muse behind whorled viewz
For several years now, Emell Vee has sent Whorled Viewz cartoons our way with the hope they might be published. Emell is a private person but agreed to provide answers to ten questions we get asked about her and her art. We hope you enjoy the interview!
Q: The two characters in the Whorled Viewz cartoons are the Darwin fish and the Icthus. Was your art inspired by the warring bumper stickers?
EV: I am more a commentator and sardonic humorist in search of a graphic medium than an artist with something to say. Stick figures can be drawn by anyone! Even more, because of their visibility on the back end of so many cars, these characters are easily recognized. They also embody our long-standing cultural debates and that is what interests me.
Q: You seem to employ an economy of words which fits well with the elemental and simple art you draw. Is that intentional?
Q: Do you want to say anything more about it?
EV: No. (laughs)
Q: Okay then. Let's shift to what some say they like about your cartoons, the multiple inferences you squeeze into a single panel in what is at most a single exchange between two characters. Is that a standard you try for with each cartoon?
EV: It sounds funny, I think, but the panels write themselves in the everyday and amusing exchanges throughout our culture. Perhaps I have found a way to listen well enough to find and record them.
Q: Do you think humor is waning in our culture?
EV: Humor seems to have become confused with voyueristic pleasure at the insult or misfortune of another. I'd like to see humor returned to observing the irony that surrounds us and fills us--a way of not taking ourselves so seriously. I think that type of humor feeds a healthier way of living and building society.
Q: Your characters: are they male or female?
EV: Does it matter? I'm not trying to avoid the question, but I just have not felt it useful to nail that down. I feel the same way about needing to develop some underlying narrative, or figuring out who is supposed to be winning the debate between an agnostic or faith perspective. Each exchange can stand on its own without having to maintain some sort of continuity.
Q: I understand you are a person of faith, however. Aren't you worried about being misunderstood when you point out the quirks of a faith perspective from a secular point of view?
EV: Some take offense if they think Whorld Viewz exists to push their point of view. But they might be offended from either side of this debate no matter what our friends say in these cartoons. That sort of brittleness is one of the major themes here and it is too bad that the great irony escapes the person who bristles at one of these panels. In fact, some of those exchanges with people who took exception to a previous cartoon have become the subject of later cartoons.
These two views of the world live side by side with others in a global society. They will clash, be inconsistent, act hatefully, form new communities and neighborliness, triumph and fail, providing a lot of humorous and thoughtful material along the way. I don't think the material will get exhausted any time soon.
Q: Every now and then you introduce another character: a sanctimonious brother fish, the unseen fisherman, Mother Nature, even the devil. are there some other characters coming?
EV: Yes, at least I think so. They sort of just wander in.
Q: Where do you do your most creative work? Maybe the better question is where you find inspiration.
EV: There is no telling where.
Q: That answers sounds like a Whorled Viewz caption."There is no telling where" can mean that there is no one place where you do your best work or gain inspiration. Or, it can mean you are not telling where. Which is it?
EV: Gotcha! isn't it fun being enigmatic?
Q: Married? Children? How you became acquainted with Mark L Vincent?
EV: (Laughs) This interview is over. Bye.
Design Group International regularly publishes Emell Vee's Whorled Viewz cartoons in this blog and on PInterest.
All blogs reflect the thoughts of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Design Group International, Inc.